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skates NOT made in china


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#1 sebseb

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Posted 02 November 2008 - 11:21 AM

Hi, I am very curious, from what you know, what models are made somewhere else than Asia (except for Graf skates which are made in Canada and Switzerland). I ask this because a guy at my local rink showed me a pair of RBK 5k (the ones with the big logo on the side, not the 2008 model) and he said they were crap made in Thailand. I don't have much experience (none) with the RBK skates, but I didn't like the plastic the outsole was made of, and the tendon guard was very soft. The same guy told me of someones 9ks (2008 model) that were made in Canada an were the real deal. I figured those were actually made in Canada because they are the high-end model (bought on hockeymonkey.com). Is there any chance of getting lower-end models (one55, xxv, v8, etc) not made in Asia, and if there are, where can one get them in Europe? Do online stores like hockeymonkey get only good merchandise or is a matter of chance if you get the ones made by qualified workers or made by underaged kids in Asia? Thanks

#2 JR Boucicaut

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Posted 02 November 2008 - 12:14 PM

First off, no underage workers in Asia making your skates so stop it with that myth.
QC has greatly improved.
Only Canadian-made retail skates are One95, 9k, U+ and Graf.

#3 gagner89

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Posted 02 November 2008 - 12:17 PM

With the correct QC, quality between skates made in China and Canada would be the same.

With large manufacturers such as RBK and Bauer, I wouldn't even think twice about country of manufacturing.

#4 colt45

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Posted 02 November 2008 - 12:25 PM

Hi, I am very curious, from what you know, what models are made somewhere else than Asia (except for Graf skates which are made in Canada and Switzerland). I ask this because a guy at my local rink showed me a pair of RBK 5k (the ones with the big logo on the side, not the 2008 model) and he said they were crap made in Thailand. I don't have much experience (none) with the RBK skates, but I didn't like the plastic the outsole was made of, and the tendon guard was very soft. The same guy told me of someones 9ks (2008 model) that were made in Canada an were the real deal. I figured those were actually made in Canada because they are the high-end model (bought on hockeymonkey.com). Is there any chance of getting lower-end models (one55, xxv, v8, etc) not made in Asia, and if there are, where can one get them in Europe? Do online stores like hockeymonkey get only good merchandise or is a matter of chance if you get the ones made by qualified workers or made by underaged kids in Asia? Thanks


The differenfce between the RbK's isnt the country they were made in, it's that they took the original 9k's, saw what went wrong with them, and improved on that.

My 9k's were the best skates ive ever had before they broke inn too much and the big logo on the side you were talking about, it lost all support, and kind of just caved in. My tendon guard was also kinda soft, but i never had a problem with that. Im getting the 9k;s the new ones
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#5 Rags81

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Posted 02 November 2008 - 12:29 PM

5K and 9K are very different.

You can look at a NBH One05 and say they are crap compared to the One95.

If you look at a lower end model of course the quality is not going to be top notch.

#6 habsfan87

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Posted 02 November 2008 - 12:29 PM

I agree Quality has gotten better in Asia but some people also like supporting the local economy, or non local...the non-asian economy we'll say. I couldn't see them making the same model in both asia and canada however
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#7 sebseb

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Posted 02 November 2008 - 12:33 PM

First off, no underage workers in Asia making your skates so stop it with that myth.
QC has greatly improved.
Only Canadian-made retail skates are One95, 9k, U+ and Graf.

just kidding with the underaged kids, chill, I'm sure now they are all grown up :P
thanks for the info, I'm surpised the xxxx are not made in Canada, but I trust your knowledge when it comes to skates

#8 DarkStar50

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Posted 02 November 2008 - 12:40 PM

Made in Canada skates? Add $100 to retail for North American labor costs. Great idea in theory, just does not work in the real world.
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#9 JR Boucicaut

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Posted 02 November 2008 - 01:15 PM

DS - yes, if they go across the board it will eat into profit margins.
sebseb - xxxx made in Asia. There is one assembly line in the Canadian factory and Bauer dedicates one skate to it. The custom shop however does several skates (xxxx/95/supreme/fl12)

#10 tpedersen3118

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Posted 25 January 2012 - 02:48 PM

-JR

I know this thread is quite old, but are any of Bauer's skates made in Canada anymore? The reason I ask is because the quality of my One95's compared to my One100's is night and day. Maybe my 100's had a QC issue but they have not held up well and I went back to my 2yr old 95's. - Thanks!

#11 JR Boucicaut

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Posted 25 January 2012 - 03:27 PM

Just custom.

#12 MyBoxersSayJoe

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Posted 25 January 2012 - 06:09 PM

Made in Canada skates? Add $100 to retail for North American labor costs. Great idea in theory, just does not work in the real world.


Are parts produced there in Canada, or are the skates just assembled?

#13 LeMagnifique66

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Posted 25 January 2012 - 06:18 PM

Wow, old thread.

You can add the CCM U+ CL to the list of "Made in Canada".
(Of course, it was virtually identical to the U+ 12 when I tried them both. The CL is $200 more likely only because the 12 is made over seas.)

#14 Chadd

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Posted 25 January 2012 - 08:16 PM

Wow, old thread.

You can add the CCM U+ CL to the list of "Made in Canada".
(Of course, it was virtually identical to the U+ 12 when I tried them both. The CL is $200 more likely only because the 12 is made over seas.)

They are not the same skate, that was covered quite well when they came out.
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#15 LeMagnifique66

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Posted 26 January 2012 - 12:29 AM

They are not the same skate, that was covered quite well when they came out.


I know the outsole material is different as well as the liner, at the least. I'm just saying the way they felt on my feet.

#16 TaKizaki81

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Posted 24 March 2012 - 12:24 AM

I'm late to this topic but glad people are still having interest....I would love to add some of my experiences. I've just gotten back into inline hockey just a year ago from a 12 year off season. I was on old school Bauer Pro Comp inline skates made in Canada. Greatest skates I've ever had...never noticing whether they were made here, there, or anywhere. Before those I was on CCM Tacks...probably made in Canada. Now that I'm older I wanted newer skates without the cost. I purchased cheap $99 Nike Bauer 5090's. Great fit as expected from Bauer, but now a few years down the road the rivets are coming apart on the heal which are easily redone with new coppers. I thought I wanted the new Labeda Evictions(for all 80mm) but with a Bauer boot and purchased the frames and the Bauer x3.0 LE ice skates to convert. I noticed before I got the runners removed that the build quality on the skates were really, really poor. One of the steels were about a half an inch ahead of the boot compared to the other! The inside read, "Made in Thailand." Then I looked at my cheap roller blades. Great build, good alignment, cheap material, but overall great...as expected, built in Canada. I would theorize that Canada would make a better hockey product whether management has anything to do with it. It's like having Russian's(for example) making quality sushi...it can be managed and executed, but what do they really know about sushi, and can all Russians be taught to do it? Sure people can be taught to do anything, but without passion and heritage, it's pointless(without consideration of cost).

I'm about to rivet on the Labeda Evictions onto the Bauer x3.0 LE boot within a few days. I hope to find myself back here with my findings of the new skate...though the conversion might have altered the build quality of the inner/outer sole and the boot itself.

#17 Rockingsquat

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Posted 24 March 2012 - 09:03 AM

It's like having Russian's(for example) making quality sushi...it can be managed and executed, but what do they really know about sushi, and can all Russians be taught to do it? Sure people can be taught to do anything, but without passion and heritage, it's pointless(without consideration of cost).


Must be the biggest bullshit I've ever heard.
I think everyone now can see the difference in quality btw overseas and Canada is very limited. Because canada-made skate quality is going down and overseas quality is increasing.
What's revolting is that manufacturing the skates overseas should diminish the price for the final customer.. In reality what's happening is the exact opposite.

If you want good old decent quality on your skate, you have to go swiss graf. The Last of the Mohicans
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#18 DarkStar50

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Posted 24 March 2012 - 09:17 PM

Good luck finding "Swiss Graf." Graf hockey skates made in Calgary, Canada can have as many quality control problems as skates made anywhere in the world. "Made in Canada" does not equal perfection in hockey skate quality. As if every skate sharpening done in Canada was perfect...............I don't think so.........
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#19 Axxion89

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Posted 24 March 2012 - 09:43 PM

People can scream that US/Canadian quality is the best around but sadly that's no longer the case. Manufacturing techniques and innovation overseas and made it to the point that the build quality is almost indistinguishable. I've seen many hockey products and other products (Guitars) made in USA/Canada vs Overseas and to me, there is no difference or the overseas products are made better! If you want to ensure quality, buy it in person at your LHS, inspect before you pay, and you will know whether you have a good product.
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#20 Canuck

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Posted 24 March 2012 - 10:13 PM

Really it comes down to preference. I had RBK 8K's and I now have Graf's both made in Canada. With that said the price for Canadian products does cost more and may not be any better. However, if you have the money(operative term) the I say go for the Canadian product. Just like I would say buy USA. I have done both when it comes to hockey gear and clothing in general. Although its impossible not to buy Chinese for some products, I like to think I may be supporting local industry with my money.

Besides from what I hear local manufacturing is actually ramping up since quality/product control is hard to control in other countries. Hence companies like Boeing(although not hockey, quality control is a big issue for them) is now returning to the USA for its manufacturing. Now for something sew/stitched like a skate/padding its probably not that big of a deal. But I still prefer buying Canadian/American.
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#21 Chris Gent

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 09:30 AM

I beg to differ with those of you who claim there is little difference. I have pro-stock Bauer (NOT Nike Bauer) One95s made in Canada and there is just no comparison to a pair of the retail skates made in Thailand. The amount of abuse mine have taken is amazing, and the boots are still as stiff as the brand new (still sitting on the shelf) One100s at the pro shop at the rink at which I work part time. I know 2 people who are onto their 2nd pair of One95s (retail) without as much skating as I have done in the 2+ years since we both got the first pairs on the same day at the Stars Warehouse sale in 2010, and I outweigh both of them by 70+ pounds each. I have no doubts that my skates are better in build quality and performance than the retail ones, and their experience with the same model in a retail version bears that out. Just the fact that the entire heel area and 2 of the 4 pairs of rivets at the front are done in coppers instead of the garbage rivets in the retail skates helps with blade stiffness and fit and keeps them from rusting out when I am in them 4-5 times a week and the humidity in Dallas doesn't let them ever dry out.

To answer the original question, I would strongly suggest finding your exact size (like 9 3/4 D/A) as close as you can, and then scouring eBay until you find a pair in that size that are in decent shape at a decent price. I bet you won't spend as much as retail anyway, and if you can get over the fact that they aren't shiny new skates the first couple of times you use them, you will not be disappointed in their durability. Unless the Stars stop selling their used gear at then ends of every season at decent prices (or they stop having guys with my size feet!), I will never buy retail skates again, unless the pair of One100s I tried on last week that are still priced at almost $400 with tax were half of that...even then, I'd pay $150-250 for a pair of lightly used pro-stock skates and feel really happy with my purchase.

Again though, the key is to REALLY know what size you need, and in which specific skate your foot fits the best. If your foot doesn't fit in CCMs, don't buy them even if they are cheap / high-end pro-stock skates, because you will not be happy with the feel / fit / etc.

#22 AIREAYE

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 09:40 AM

Chris, I don't think your argument is really fair because pro stock skates have features in them that can rival retail. Pros can opt for double stitching, better tongues and increased stiffnesses that should, as a package, outlast the retail model. Got to remember that pro stock boots were made for professional players who skate harder and more often than any of us.

Edited by AIREAYE, 26 March 2012 - 09:48 AM.


#23 DarkStar50

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 09:48 AM

Agreed with AIREAYE, your pro stock skates were built on different specs than retail skates. They may look the same but they are not the same boot. Again, not everyone needs a custom built or a pro stock boot. There is a very good chance the guy who finds his exact size in pro stock skates cannot skate in them due to how the skates were built with stiffness and options. Consider yourself fortunate that the pair you snapped up has worked out so well for you.
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#24 Chris Gent

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 09:53 AM

I was not really saying the comparison should be fair...he wanted skates that weren't made in China, and for my money (which is tight as a teacher who has to work part time to pay for gear and league fees for a travel peewee, house mite, and 2 parents playing rec hockey), pro-stock skates meet both his "made in Canada" (or at least not Asia) criteria and quality desires, at a price that is close to mid-range. I know for sure mine are different than retails, as they have even less ankle padding than the TotalOnes do (which is less than the One100s or retail One95s). Even a well-worn pair of pro-stocks, if they fit right, will last at least as long as a pair of $200 cheapies made in Thailand.

As for the "can't skate in the skates" argument, I totally agree. It might be a crap shoot, but then again, it's worth the risk to me to give it a shot. Mine weren't perfect (aforementioned ankle padding issues), but a quick fix with some neoprene foam and I loved them.

#25 Les213

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Posted 26 March 2012 - 10:02 AM

Quality control is about process, not "passion and heritage". Making a process foolproof and automating it as much as possible eliminates human error. Where it is made does not eliminate faulty design. It's a reason why Japanese automotive manufacturers can replicate quality products regardless of where they're produced. If you teach a Russian the proper process and give him quality tools and materials, I have no doubt they would produce "quality sushi".

It's tough for your average consumer to comment on quality differences between their skate and their buddy's skate. The sample size makes the point mute. I think the most qualified people would be the guys on this board who work at a retail shop and deal with the life cycle of each product over the long run.